Mazda CX-30 Review & Prices

The Mazda CX-30 SUV is fun to drive and looks great, but it doesn't have the biggest boot

Buy or lease the Mazda CX-30 at a price you’ll love
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RRP £25,365 - £37,265 Avg. Carwow saving £2,154 off RRP
Carwow price from
Cash
£23,613
Monthly
£269*
Used
£13,920
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wowscore
7/10
Reviewed by Carwow after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • Stylish looks
  • Great fun to drive for a small SUV
  • Decent levels of standard equipment

What's not so good

  • More powerful engine doesn't feel that potent
  • Rear seat space isn't great...
  • ...and boot space can't match the best small SUVs

Find out more about the Mazda CX-30

Is the Mazda CX-30 a good car?

The Mazda CX-30 is a stylish SUV that’s great to drive and comes packed full of kit, making it a good value alternative to other good-looking SUVs, such as the Audi Q3, BMW X2 and SEAT Ateca.

Because of its sporty drive, it’s the designer tracksuit to those cars’ dapper evening wear.

But just like that posh streetwear could fit in at a fancy bar, the Mazda CX-30 works just as well on the school run as it does sprinting down a twisty road, thanks to its sleek styling, even if it is a shame that chunky black cladding is present even on higher trims.

This hint of rough-and-ready attitude doesn’t continue inside, because although the interior is a touch plain and the infotainment screen is small, the design is classy and everything feels quality to the touch.

It’s spacious, too – at least for those in the front. Rear seat passengers will find legroom is rather limited and the sloping roof makes it a little claustrophobic.

The CX-30 is a family car for those who enjoy driving and want to look good while doing it

Boot space doesn’t compensate for this, either. At 430 litres it should be enough for most, but you can’t slide the seats forward for more space and the SEAT, Audi and BMW all beat it for capacity.

What you lose in practicality is made up for in the driving experience. On a twisty road, not many family SUVs could match it for smiles-per-mile, though the trade-off is that it can be a bit jiggly over bumps.

If you want to maximise twisty road enjoyment, you will want the more powerful of the two petrol engines – it’s more expensive but gets newer tech, so it’s actually more economical, too. If you want to go electric, the Mazda MX-30 is a similar size to the CX-30, but has a tiny battery so the range figure is low.

Despite its lack of electric motors, the Mazda CX-30 is a great family SUV option for those who enjoy the odd countryside jaunt and want something stylish parked on the drive. Its tight rear seats mean it’s far from perfect for those who carry kids in the back or need to fit a bulky child seat, though.

Still sound appealing? You can check out the latest Mazda CX-30 deals available through carwow, as well as browse used CX-30 models. Take a look at other used Mazda models from our network of trusted dealers, and when it’s time to sell your current car, carwow can help with that, too.

How much is the Mazda CX-30?

The Mazda CX-30 has a RRP range of £25,365 to £37,265. However, with Carwow you can save on average £2,154. Prices start at £23,613 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £269. The price of a used Mazda CX-30 on Carwow starts at £13,920.

Our most popular versions of the Mazda CX-30 are:

Model version Carwow price from
2.0 e-Skyactiv G MHEV Prime-Line 5dr £23,613 Compare offers

You’ll need to settle down with a big cuppa to study the Mazda CX-30 price list in full. However, there are some clear price differences worth noting right from the start.

If you want to move up from the 122hp petrol engine to the 186hp motor, it can add up to £2,000 depending on the trim you're considering, while the automatic gearbox is about £1,500 over the manual.

With the more powerful 186hp engine, you can add all-wheel drive in place of the standard two-wheel drive, but again, it's about £2,000 extra. If you want the more powerful engine with all-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox the starting price quickly ramps up.

Despite this, the Mazda CX-30 is priced favourably compared with more premium alternatives – even if you go for the fully loaded version, it's not much more than an entry-level Audi Q3 or BMW X2. The SEAT Ateca is priced almost identically to the Mazda, making it a good place to look next on your shopping list.

Performance and drive comfort

The Mazda CX-30 is great fun to drive, but it does come at the expense of comfortable ride and offers middling levels of refinement

In town

The CX-30 is based on the company's Mazda 3 small family hatch and it shows in how high, or rather how low, the driver sits in the car. We’re all for a sporty driving feel, but the CX-30 falls short of offering the raised SUV seating that many will want from this class of car.

The flipside to this is the CX-30 is very comfortable and superbly well made. Every model comes with a height adjustable driver’s seat with tilting base and, along with a steering wheel that can be altered for height and reach, almost anyone will find the ideal spot behind the Mazda’s helm.

You also get rear parking sensors with all CX-30 models, but you need to skip the base Prime-Line if you want front parking sensors and a reversing camera included. These are a big help as the CX-30’s low driving position can make it tricky to judge where the corners of the car are.

On the move in town, the CX-30 has a firm ride that jitters more over potholes than a Skoda Karoq. It’s not jarring, but definitely something you notice.

The engines might have mild hybrid assistance, but they don’t have any electric range and need to be revved harder than feels acceptable to give decent acceleration. Still, the manual and automatic gearboxes are both very smooth as they go about their business.

On the motorway

The firm ride that makes itself known in town becomes more of an issue at higher speeds. In the Mazda CX-30, you will feel many more ridges and ripples than you would in a Volkswagen T-Roc or Audi Q3.

The unsettled sensation in the CX-30 undermines its otherwise creditable performance on the motorway, where it is stable in crosswinds and gives good steering feel.

With the 122hp engine, it needs working hard to get the CX-30 up to speed but, thankfully, relaxes at a cruise. The 186hp motor is much better at pulling towards the motorway limit, but still needs more revs than the turbocharged engines in most other cars in this class.

On a twisty road

If you like driving and brighten up when a country road opens up in front with no other traffic, the Mazda CX-30 is a family SUV you should consider.

The firm ride in town and on the motorway becomes an ally on these roads, keeping body lean very much in check. However, the kids in the back might well have a very different opinion as the CX-30 still jiggles over anything but very smooth surfaces.

There’s also excellent steering, which turns the car in promptly to bends to make the most of decent grip.

With all-wheel drive versions, the CX-30 is good for cold and wet roads, but forget any notions of driving up muddy tracks.

Space and practicality

Lovely to look at and beautiful to hold, but the CX-30 is not the biggest all told

Mazda has a knack of making cars with excellent driving positions and the CX-30 is not about to upset that fine tradition.

Its driver’s seat may be lower slung than many in this class, but it makes it very easy to get in and out through a wide door aperture.

Once you are sat in the CX-30, you’ll find there’s height adjustment for the driver’s chair in all models. This is uprated to electric movement in GT models, which also enjoy a heated steering wheel as standard that is very welcome on chilly mornings.

Every CX-30 trim other than the entry-point Prime-Line comes with heated front seats, and they warm up very quickly to take the edge off winter starts.

The steering wheel moves up and down, and in and out, so tinkering to get the right driving position is simple in the CX-30.

The wide centre console has a tray in front of the gear lever with a flip-up lid that’s ideal for stashing your phone, and there’s a USB charger in there. This is also where you’ll find the two cupholders built into this space.

Behind the gear stick is a cubby with lifting lid that doubles as an armrest for the driver and front passenger.

More storage comes in the door pockets that will hold a small bottle of water.

Space in the back seats

If the front of the Mazda CX-30 is very good for this class, the rear seats are not nearly as generous.

Any adult of average height or more is going to find legroom on the cramped side of bearable, and there’s only just enough elbow room for a pair of grown-ups back here.

As for head space, there’s enough for adults, but the roof slopes in at the sides due to the CX-30’s styling, so you do feel a bit claustrophobic. This sensation is compounded by the high window line and, if you stick with black upholstery, a gloomy feel.

Mazda redeems itself by supplying ISOFIX child seat mounts on both outer rear seats, but anyone sitting in the middle will find there’s not much space for their feet due to the transmission tunnel.

One last mark against the CX-30 for rear passenger comfort is the back doors don’t open very wide and the gap to get in and out is fairly narrow as a result. 

Boot space

A few years ago, the Mazda CX-30’s boot would have drawn plenty of praise, but the game has moved on.

It’s a reasonable size at 430 litres with the rear seats in place, but the back bench doesn’t slide to alter load volume as it does on some other small SUVs, such as the Renault Captur.

Up against its closest alternatives, the SEAT Ateca has 510 litres, while the German options – the Audi Q3 and BMW X2 – also beat the Mazda, as they have 530 litres and 470 litres available respectively

Nor does the Mazda have anything more than a 60-40 split and fold back seat, whereas many others now have 40:20:40 divided seats for more versatility.

Unlike the CX-5, the CX-30 misses remote release levers to fold its rear seats, but they do tumble to leave a large load volume of up to 1,406 litres.

You get a split-level boot floor in every CX-30 other than the base Prime-Line model to help with flexibility. As for the load sill, it’s one of the lowest in the class, though it doesn’t sit flush with the boot floor.

Interior style, infotainment and accessories

High class, high grade, and highly equipped in the top trims, although the main screen isn’t the biggest, and isn’t a touchscreen

Mazda knows how to put a car’s interior together in a way that outshines most others. It also uses materials that look, feel, and even smell classier than most cars costing the same sort of money.

For this reason, the CX-30’s interior exudes a sense of quality that has more in common with Audi and BMW than the Mazda’s usual compatriots like the Ford Puma or Nissan Juke.

Even in the most basic trim, the grey fabric upholstery gives the impression of being a cut above the common herd. Move to the top-spec models of CX-30 and they have leather trim as standard to further the Mazda’s upmarket ambience.

All of this would be for nothing if the CX-30 didn’t deliver with a decent amount of standard kit. Luckily for Mazda, it comes good and all models have a 7.0-inch main dash display to augment the large round speedo dial. The digital display can be switched between functions and used to read traffic signs, speed limits, and for the radar cruise control that’s included with all CX-30s.

In the middle of the dash, Mazda sticks with a pair of round dials to adjust the cabin temperature. This is also where you’ll find the buttons for the heated seats and steering wheel, if fitted to your CX-30.

Above the heater controls in the centre of the dash top is the 8.8-inch infotainment screen used in every CX-30. Mazda bucks the trend by not using a touchscreen and, instead, you scroll through logical menus with the rotary controller positioned just to the rear of the gear stick. There’s also a separate, smaller dial here for the stereo’s volume, or you can use the steering wheel controls for this.

Mazda’s infotainment set-up works very well as you don’t have to try to steady your finger while reaching to prod a screen. You just turn the dial and click through the clear graphics.

The system comes with sat-nav included, and you can also hook up your phone and its apps with wireless Android Auto or Apple CarPlay.

MPG, emissions and tax

On the face of it, the Mazda CX-30 range is simple as there are only two engines to choose between. However, you also have the option of an automatic gearbox with both engines, and two- or four-wheel drive with the more powerful 186hp motor.

The 122hp 2.0-litre engine gives an official 47.9mpg and 134g/km carbon dioxide emissions with the six-speed manual ’box. Or, with the auto transmission, you get 44.8mpg combined economy and 143g/km.

The punchier 186hp engine delivers better economy and lower emissions than this with a manual gearbox, giving 50.4mpg and 127g/km. Go for the auto and you get 46.3mpg and 137g/km.

If the four-wheel drive CX-30 appeals, the manual manages 46.3mpg and 137g/km, while the auto registers official outputs of 42.8mpg and 149g/km.

All of the CX-30 range sits in the same bracket for annual road tax in the middle of the range, but as there's no PHEV or all-electric version of the CX-30, company car tax is quite high.

Safety and security

Mazda doesn’t hold back when it comes to the safety equipment in the CX-30. You get seven airbags, which includes a driver’s knee ’bag, which earned it a full five-star rating in Euro NCAP safety tests and a hugely impressive 99% mark for adult occupant safety.

This is helped along by all CX-30s coming with a lane keep assist and departure warning, plus intelligent speed assistance and traffic sign recognition. There’s also blind spot monitoring with rear cross traffic warning to let you know if vehicles are approaching unseen from either side as you reverse out of a space.

A driver attention alert is included, as well as automatic emergency braking, and Mazda’s radar cruise control.

Once past the base time you get keyless entry, and automatic models add a 'stop and go' feature to the cruise control for slow-moving traffic. These trims also have front cross traffic alert, and a 360-degree parking camera to offer a bird’s eye view on the infotainment screen.

Reliability and problems

Mazda has a strong reputation for reliability and the CX-30 is holding true to that.

There has been a single recall for this model, which was due the power tailgate on some models closing unexpectedly. This should now have been resolved on any of the cars affected that were sold up to April 2021.

The three-year warranty is about average for what you will find in the UK, and is the same as that on most of the similar cars you might consider. You can pay extra for an extended warranty, but Hyundai and Kia offer more out of the box at five years and seven years respectively.

Buy or lease the Mazda CX-30 at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
RRP £25,365 - £37,265 Avg. Carwow saving £2,154 off RRP
Carwow price from
Cash
£23,613
Monthly
£269*
Used
£13,920
Ready to see prices tailored to you?
Compare new offers Compare used deals
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